It feels so good

Blog, Photography

… to be back.  Back to taking photographs, back to creating new works, and back, sitting right here on a Sunday morning, sharing it all with you!  Oh wait, it’s Monday, Labor Day.  Still, I can’t think of a better way to spend this extra day off 🙂

This summer’s road trip was just what was needed to break a persisting photographic slump…  From PA to GA and back again.  First stop, Blacksburg, VA, where, nestled in a little valley was the first of many barns we would see…  Fortunately, this one was in a place where I could actually hit the brakes, turn the car around, and go get the shot.

The main reason for this road trip, my nieces wedding in Ball Ground, GA, a little town not far from Atlanta…  Navigating Atlanta’s mega highways and traffic didn’t leave much time for picture taking; just getting to the venue was a feat, and in the nick of time.  We did return to Ball Ground the next morning, where I found some roadside treasures and we strolled a beautiful botanical garden; and I can’t wait to get to those photos!

Next Asheville, NC.  If you haven’t been, is a must! Artsy, fun, colorful and vibrant…  Oh, side note, did you know Asheville has the most breweries per capita in the U.S.?  Let’s just say you might want to pace yourself…

And did I mention colorful? My tour guide/husband did an amazing job at getting us off the beaten path and finding some of Asheville’s hidden treasures.

    

And it wouldn’t have been much of a road trip if we didn’t hop on the Blue Ridge Parkway… with all it’s winding roads and breathtaking views.

The final destination on this amazing road trip, Harrisonburg, VA and Harper’s Ferry, W. VA… historic sites and National Parks, natural wonders and some not so natural wonders.

     

 

Once home… and over these last few weeks, I haven’t stopped.  More photo destinations and so many ideas, I can’t keep them all straight.  And, oh, it feels so good!

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Snapshots

Photography

Memorial-RoseI have since returned from my road trip with my daughter, celebrated all sorts of birthdays, etc., and kicked off summer and the festival season with Carversville day.  I survived May!  With hundreds of photos and lots of topics to write about, I think I’ll actually start from the beginning…  The-biltmoreno, not with my trip… not exactly… but with scrapbooking.

Road Trip HighlightsI used to spend hours (and lots of $ for double prints) cutting up my drug store developed photos, buying stickers that said cute or funny things, and pasting it all to a page.   Then, yippee, along came digital to speed up the process… and, well, that is how it all began, this fascination of mine with photography and digital art.

Of course, I wasn’t planning to start out this bog post with a flashback to my past.  I had ideas to write about things like dealing with the obstacles of shooting amongst the tourists,  during tourists’ hours and all the wrong conditions,  or how not to bore (or embarrass) those you are traveling with.  I guess this is why photographers pay good money to go on workshops or photo excursions.

the body language says it all

that body language says it all

But… feeling a bit sentimental and having read a few blog posts and articles recently on society’s new photo taking habits, it got me to thinking how my own photo practices have changed.

I recently read somewhere that the number of photos taken in 2015 will reach 1 trillion!!!  And in another article, the question (or something to the effect) was asked, just how many of those photos, all those “snapshots,” will  future generations will ever see? Or how about all the chatter about the questionable longevity of our digital images on hard drives, discs, or the cloud.  Even in my own photo-life there is now about a 5+ year gap, where my images (my memories) sit on a hard drive in no particular order (and in only a file system I can probably understand)…  for no one else to see.

So, after looking through all my shots over the past month, I started again, from the beginning, looking for my snapshots . . . for those photos that truly capture the fleeting moments that leave the biggest impressions, the unexpected finds, and the indescribable feelings and memory that a photo (that snapshot) can rekindle, and the story they tell or will tell once they are put together.

Turns out… most of my snapshots were taken with my camera phone (you know, the camera that’s always with you and much more inconspicuous than that DSLR your lugging around).

20150509_153139

Love this and all its imperfections 🙂

Maybe, some day, I can go back and scrapbook those 5 or 6 years (before they disintegrate on my hard drive), but, for now,  it’s time to start a brand new scrapbook/photo album, to put those snapshots in print, so they are ready to share…  with the grand kids (someday), family, and friends.  I’m not leaving such important memories to chance.

 

Winter Getaway

Blog, Photography

Cold and cloudy days have been more the norm of late, but then again it is mid January after all… so nothing unusual.  And in the morning, the little bit of snow that fell this evening will give everything a fresh clean look… for a a little while at least.   Still, I can’t feel a little envious of those who take that winter getaway, some place warm & sunny.Dune-Way

Since this is not something that is in the cards, at least not this winter, I’m doing the next best thing… revisiting my beach vacation photos from this past summer.

Moonlit-stroll

So tonight, as a burrow in under mounds of blankets on this cold winter night, I will drift off to sleep with visions of a warm moonlit stroll along the beach… on my winter getaway.

Til next time,
Maria

 

 

 

 

 

Summer’s to-do list…

Photography
summer-colors

Love my ph-ab-let’s (Samsung Note 2) camera ❤

Oh well, it will just have to wait until next summer.  It really is September… and summer is over.

I had so many plans for this summer …to do this and that around the house, teach myself a few new photo techniques, find new places to explore, read a book or two, just to name a few on the list.  {sigh} The patio furniture is still unpainted, I’m not sure I will ever get the hang of “painting” in Photoshop, and my explorations were limited to those all too familiar places.   I can, however, check off read a book from the list 🙂  tiny-treasures-from-the-sea

The problem with that summer scenario is that expectations are just too high… at least in the beginning.  Then reality sets in… summers are for kids and we [adults] still have work and other responsibilities.

But … if fortunate enough, we can chisel out a week (maybe two if real lucky) to take a break, to rejuvenate our souls… to get us through… until the next summer vacation. Mine was at the end of August with long walks on the beach, finding tiny treasures in the sand, and sitting under my brightly colored umbrella reading a good book (and a half).  The perfect summer ending.

duneWhat to-do list?

Til next time,
Maria

 

 

Better Late than Never

Beyond Layers, Photography

Oh my! Day six into the New Year and I’m already running behind in wishing everyone Happy New Year  Hmm, I think my moto for 2013 should be Better Late than Never. And my word for 2013. . . time.  As in time to reflect, time to love, time to grow … or time stops for no one, if I just had a little more time to . . .

Our snow here in eastern PA is all but gone, but then again we only got maybe an inch or two.  The dogs are enjoying the last of the chunks of ice laying around. They like to go out at munch on them almost as much as what the rabbits leave behind.  TMI?…eh, maybe.   Anyway…. I bared the elements the day of the snow to go find a favorite barn of mine.  I thought it would look so pretty in the snow.  Unfortunately, hurricane Sandy looks like it got the best of the old barn and it now has a gaping hole and is barely standing 😦 .    Discouraged by not getting a photo of the old barn or having anything new to work on, I decided to revisit MY year in pictures and make the old new again.

I also felt I needed a challenge myself. I didn’t want this post to get blown out of proportion, get too involved in the details, or spend too much time on it  {a definite must to improve upon in 2013 when it comes to my blogging}.  So the challenge …keep it fun!  I set a few conditions:  First, I searched by month.  This is where keywording can be very important.  I could only pick those photos that showed up in that month (Reminder to self:  Don’t forget to keyword by month 😉  .  Second, the 5 second rule.  I could only view the photo for 5 seconds (i.e. a relatively short period of time) and then either pick it or move on.  And, if I picked it, that was it, no give backs.  Third, the processing.  Here, again, pick something, but something new… a new action I haven’t tried before, a new texture, a new process… and work with it.  No second guessing, no fussing… okay, maybe just a little fussing.  And so this was my 2012 . . .

gather The winter months are perfect for this.  Yes, reading a good book, but I was leaning more toward shooting still lifes.

LUV Given to me by a dear friend … I just ❤ this.

natures-marvelous You just can’t plan these sort of things…

big-guy Don’t you just want to hug him <3!

hidden-treasure Sometimes life’s not fair …

Path … that’s all. waiting…take a break.

starfish What is it about the seashore and all it’s treasures … so inspiring, so relaxing.   I wish I could package it and carry it around with me all year.

closed-til-next-year Fall Colors!

fancy-fall I love this flower’s resilience.

on-the-run Seriously, there’s just no stopping him.

Little-red-barn my barn in the snow after all.